All the country's attention was on the unedifying site of two scrawny kids wrestling with each other in front of a baying audience. This was not a flash forward to the travails of the Milliband brothers at next week's highly unanticipated Labour Party conference. It refers to the so-called appalling site of children tussling, surrounded by people egging them on, while not wearing a regulation head guards, which are manufactured to give the illusion of protection from injury during contact sports like boxing and wrestling. This is of course, completely without precedent, except for the fact that exactly the same thing happens every day in every school yard in the country. No child appeared to have been hurt in the process of producing these events and the kids themselves appeared to skewer the questioning of the journalists by claiming to have enjoyed it. It actually looked like excellent exercise. At least they weren't playing video games in a curtained room all day while eating crisps, which in the long run would be a lot more damaging to their health than a few rounds in the ring.
Either way, it provided a moment's respite from the reporting that we are, in a word, doomed. The sky is falling, literally. Well, OK, not literally but there is something the size of a bus that is falling from the sky and if it hit you could hurt, even if you were wearing cranial protection. If you stood under the satellite, as it rained red hot lumps of space death, in a tin hat and an umbrella made of concrete, you would most likely need to take he rest of the day off work, owing to the fact that you would be feeling a bit dead for the rest of your life. Fortunately, NASA, (their motto: "it's not rocket science"), says that they know exactly where and when it will fall. It will, they say, come smashing down somewhere on Earth and some point either today or tomorrow, or something. So, don't say you weren't warned. It could fall down anywhere at any time, says NASA. Accuracy may not be their strong point.
But that's OK because neither was it Einstein's. E=mc2, he said, forming the most famous equation that everyone now knows and almost no-one understands. Well, if you have failed to grasp the intricacies of that dictum, you can bathe in a soup of satisfied gloating over those that have spent their life working with it, as it appears that it was totally right, apart from being completely wrong in every respect. E does not equal mc squared, or even cubed. Any fule kno that. Neutrinos, whatever they are, can go faster than the speed of light, or so says that dippy bloke that presented some groovy science shows on telly. This has very important consequences for physics that I shall look up in another lifetime, when I am not so easily bored. When they change the formula for the perfect pizza, THEN they'll have made a contribution to the advancement of humankind that we can all get excited about. We'll leave them to their slide rules and their Nobo boards until they can describe what they have done in English, like our economists can't.
The whole world is on the edge of a very serious crisis. That is what we are being told on a daily basis by people who singularly failed to predict the last serious crisis, or the one before that. This could have severe consequences, they say. But they don't say what that means. Does it mean that Downton Abbey will be cancelled or that there won't be any bread in the stores? Or does it mean that there won't be any bread in the cash machines? Will businesses accept chickens as payment for goods and services, or won't there BE any businesses to deal with? Will money become worthless, will wages stop being paid, will the electricity stop coming out of the sockets in the wall? Will we have to eat spiders for tea? No-one appears to say, but they do say that there will be serious ramifications, it's just that they don't have any idea what they might be. They are so vague, so unable to put any detail on their predictions, so unsure of what it is they are talking about, that it's just possible that they may all work for NASA.